What Is DNS Server in Computer Network?


Heather Bennett

In computer networking, a DNS server stands for Domain Name System server. It is a crucial component that plays a vital role in the functioning of the internet. The DNS server acts as a translator between human-readable domain names and their corresponding IP addresses.

What does a DNS server do?

A DNS server is responsible for resolving domain names into IP addresses and vice versa. When you type a website URL into your browser, such as www.example.com, the DNS server translates that domain name into its corresponding IP address, like

Translation of Domain Names to IP Addresses:

The process of translating domain names to IP addresses is known as DNS resolution or name resolution. This translation is necessary because computers communicate with each other using IP addresses, which are numerical values.

IP Address Lookup:

To perform this translation, the DNS server maintains a database known as the DNS zone file or DNS record. This database contains mappings of domain names to their respective IP addresses.

Types of DNS Servers:

DNS servers can be categorized into different types based on their functionality and purpose. Some common types include:

1. Recursive Resolver:

A recursive resolver is responsible for finding the IP address of a domain name by querying multiple authoritative name servers in order to obtain the correct information.

2. Authoritative Name Server:

An authoritative name server holds specific information about a domain’s IP addresses and other related records like mail servers (MX records), text records (TXT records), etc.

3. Caching-only Server:

A caching-only server does not store any authoritative data but caches previously resolved queries to improve performance and reduce the load on the network.

Importance of DNS Server:

The DNS server is a fundamental component of the internet infrastructure. It plays a vital role in ensuring that users can easily access websites and other internet resources by using domain names instead of remembering complex IP addresses.

Benefits of DNS Server:

  • Improved Accessibility: DNS servers make it easier for users to access websites and other services using user-friendly domain names.
  • Faster Internet Browsing: By caching previously resolved queries, DNS servers can significantly improve the speed and efficiency of web browsing.
  • Load Distribution: DNS servers can distribute traffic across multiple IP addresses associated with a domain name, helping to balance the load on servers.
  • Fault Tolerance: In case one server fails, DNS servers can direct users to alternate IP addresses, ensuring uninterrupted service availability.

In Conclusion

The DNS server is an essential component in computer networking that translates human-readable domain names into machine-readable IP addresses. It enables seamless communication within the internet by ensuring efficient and accurate name resolution. Understanding the functionality and importance of DNS servers is crucial for anyone involved in network administration or website management.

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